Marian Ann Gmeinder (nee Weisensel) met the Lord on April 9, 2022.
Marian was born April 30, 1930 in Sun Prairie, WI to Leo and Catherine (Duschack) Weisensel. She attended Sacred Hearts School and graduated from Sun Prairie High School in 1948. She was very active in Seminary Springs and Burke 4-H.
Marian started entertaining at age 15 when she made an album with her brother Vernon titled “If I Had a Nickel.” After graduating from high school, she had two radio shows at WFOW: telling stories to children and interviewing 4-H leaders.
The most joyful part of Marian’s life was her marriage to Fred Gmeinder. Their union began September 24, 1952 and lasted 69 happy years. Together they raised six wonderful children. She had two careers: bookkeeper for Gmeinder Welding, Inc. for the 42 years of its existence; and homemaker, which didn’t end until now.
A committed volunteer and community servant, Marian was the first woman elected to a governance position in the Village of Marshall. She served as trustee for three terms and as interim president. She also championed the Marshall Cable Commission for years and reported the news on the local cable television station. She was a member of the local Music Mothers and the Mothers Club.
Marian was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church for 70 years. She was the facilitator for church bingo for numerous years and made sure people had fun while the organization followed state policies.
Taking her flair for entertaining a different direction, she founded the Sisters of St. Mary’s performing group, who sang, danced, and joked their way into many people’s hearts around southern Wisconsin for 12 years. She was a member of various choirs at St. Mary’s, and in her eighties, she sang in five sacred and secular choirs simultaneously, including the Madison College Show Choir and the Bel Canto Choir.
Importantly, Marian co-founded Marshall Community Theatre in the early 1980s and brought decades of theater performances to the village. She served as president, treasurer, and board member. She performed in several shows; her favorite role as actress was the haunting Fruma Sarah in Fiddler on the Roof. To those who knew Marian’s lifelong penchant for murder mysteries, the role was a perfect fit.
Marian was preceded in death by her parents, husband Fred Gmeinder, and siblings Elmer Weisensel, Edna Flannery, Gladys Winkelman, Audrey Powers, Leon Weisensel, Myron Weisensel, George Weisensel, and Vernon Weisensel.
She is survived by her children Marilyn (Grant) Majerus, Steven (Patty) Gmeinder, Annette (Barry) Witkowski, Nancy (Tim) Gmeinder Schroedl, Linda Barrett, and Julie (Jon) Holubowicz; sister Rita Richolson; ten grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. She is also survived by special sisters-in-law Billie Weisensel and Irene Weisensel, and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
A Mass of Christian Burial for Marian will be held on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 at 1:00PM with Fr. Jorge Miramontes presiding. Visitation will take place at church from 11:00AM until the time of service. She will be laid to rest at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery following the service.
The family wishes to thank Caring Made Easy and Agrace Hospice for their gentle care.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the St. Mary’s Marshall campus of the Holy Family Catholic Church or Agrace Hospice.
Rest in peace, good and faithful servant.